The Migros Bank will employ a new fee schedule for Maestro cards from July 1, 2015.
All Migros Bank private account (checking account) holders will now receive a Maestro debit card free of charge. That means customers will no longer have to pay the 30-franc annual card fee. As a private banking or mortgage customer at Migros Bank, you also will no longer pay annual card fees for supplementary Maestro cards.
This move sets Migros Bank apart in this regard: Most Swiss banks charge adult checking account holders between 30 and 40 (sometimes 50) francs in annual fees for their debit cards. Exceptions to this rule include youth and student accounts and fee-bearing bank packages in which debit card fees are worked into the package fee.
The downside is that Migros Bank will now charge a 2-franc fee for each withdrawal made at non-Migros Bank ATMs. Up until now, withdrawals at all ATMs were free of charge. However, out-of-network ATM withdrawal fees of 2 francs are common among Swiss banks.
You can still make cash withdrawals at Migros Bank ATMs (there are over 200) and at around 580 Migros locations free of charge.
The new fee schedule does not only apply to the bank’s checking account for adults, but also to its youth account and its current account for business.
moneyland.ch has already integrated the updates to the Migros Bank Maestro card fee schedule into its comprehensive Swiss bank account comparison. The account comparison accounts for all Maestro card fees in addition to account fees and transaction fees.
Verdict: The change to the Migros Bank fee schedule can benefit adult cardholders who make less than 15 withdrawals at out-of-network ATMs using their Maestro card each year. Customers who make more than 15 out-of-network withdrawals will pay more in Maestro card fees than they did previously. Youth account holders now have to pay every time they make an out-of-network cash withdrawal.
To avoid fees, Migros Bank customers should limit cash withdrawals to Migros ATMs and Migros outlets.
Making withdrawals (getting cash advances) using your Migros Bank credit card, as with credit cards from other issuers, is not recommended because costs are high compared to debit card cash withdrawals.